How We Met: Drew and I both worked out at a gym that was located on the top floor of the high rise apartment building where I lived, located in the heart of Herald Square, New York City. We saw each other there for eight or nine months. I (Carl) was very attracted to this tall, handsome man, but really felt he was “out of my league.” Surprisingly it was Drew who began the conversation which led to a relationship of just over 10 years, leading to the engagement.
how they asked: I told Drew that there was a “birthday surprise” for him. On May 11, 2013 at 12:30 PM I handed him two instruction envelopes. The first said “There’s a car waiting for you downstairs at 1:30PM. Get in in it and open Instruction Envelope #2 when the driver reaches your destination.” At the destination, Drew was instructed to walk to the “Angel of the Waters Fountain, at Bethesda Terrace in the heart of Central Park, NYC.
As soon as he sat down at the edge of the fountain, a flash mob (by BookAFlashMob.com) was instructed to begin their performance to Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years,” at which time I appeared and sat next to him for the song. Drew was very emotional, knowing that the Bethesda Fountain was a sacred spot for both of us and, I think then that he realized what was about to happen.
At the end of the song, the dancers pulled us into their midst, forming a circle around us, where I proposed, pulling a ring box from my boot at the very end. My words were very carefully chosen and thankfully I was able to hold it together while delivering them.
Here’s what I said and meant from the bottom of my heart: “Drew, when I first saw you, I was captivated. To my surprise, it was you who took the initiative to begin the conversation. I still remember that look in your eyes and the smile on your face. Well, that first conversation has turned into a journey of more than ten years already. Together during that time we have been with each other and for each other in good times and bad, in sickness and in health. You have helped me to grow beyond words, and I thank God every day for the gift of you in my life. Every morning I cherish waking up with you beside me. And every evening I look forward to holding you in my arms. Baby, you are my strength, my joy and my happiness. You’ve always had my back. Your, love, your loyalty, your humor—even your quirks—inspire me every day. You are “family” to me. You are “home” to me. And there is no “home” for me unless you’re there. More than anything, I am greatly looking forward to the journey that lies ahead, but only if it includes you. And so here in New York City’s Central Park, before this guardian “Angel of the Waters” statue that we both love and in which we find great meaning—and in front of all these people gathered here—I’m putting it all out there: I love you so very much, and I beg you with every fiber of my being… Andrew Francis Marsenison…will you marry me?”
Flash Mob produced by BookAFlashMob.com. Choreographed and directed by Derek Mitchell with music by Christina Perri.